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Why am I struggling to cut dd's hair short?

(144 Posts)
BlameItOnTheBogey Fri 23-Nov-12 14:21:04

DD is 2 (nearly 3). She is rough and tumble and gives her older brother a run for his money in any physical activity. She's not at all interested in dresses/ skirts and wants to be in jeans and trainers all the time. All good.

But she HATES having her chin length hair brushed. It's semi curly and knots a lot. It hurts when I brush it for her and makes her cry. She has repeatedly asked me to cut it short like her older brothers (cropped very short). I have no idea why I am reluctant to do this; I don't want to hurt her. I guess I have never seen a two year old girl with cropped hair and I worry about what people will think. I know this is ridiculous and that I my refusal to do so is down to gender stereotyping.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Would you consider cutting your young dd's hair very short?

SamuraiCindy Sat 24-Nov-12 08:16:37

I love short hair on little girls. They always look so elfin and gorgeous. Having said that, my daughter is also two, with the most beautiful wavy, siky hair, and I know I would HATE to cut it. I think that if we can just get through this stage, where it is around her shoulders, the weight of the hair as it grows will pull down the waves so that they aren't as curly, and make it less tangled.

Ploom Sat 24-Nov-12 08:30:08

I was made to have short hair as a child - parents used the "its easier to manage" line but the memory of being mistaken for a boy has never left me.
I was 13/14 before I was confident enough to say no to having it cut & its been long ever since.
If your dd wants it cut short, she needs to know that people may mistake her for a boy - will she be ok with that? I certainly wasnt!

LadyMargolotta Sat 24-Nov-12 09:13:33

As far as I know, my girls were never mistaken for boys, probably because from their faces/clothes they are clearly girls.

When they were old enough to accept hairbrushing (about the age of 6), I let them grow their hair.

I had short hair until I was a teenager. I have had long hair every since but I am not resentful about having short hair as a child.I was mistaken for a boy - people used to think me and my brother were two boys - but that certainly didn't bother me.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:24:35

My dd aged 3 has short hair. It's cut in a French bob style. Not even quite jaw length, but sculpted and feminine at the back.

Like this

Such a style will work on even curly hair as the cut is very feminine and girlish.
I LOVE her short's so easy, and makes her look gamine and funky.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:26:53

When my dd is older and wants long hair, that's fine, so long as she accepts that it must be brushed and styled.
As it was, she's 3 and doesn't care, and I cba with the daily screech over getting the hair done. It used to spill right down her back. Don't miss it.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 09:38:04

Re short cuts and curly hair, they don't work, not in the same way as they would with straight hair unless you go down the route of straightening hair which I would be loathe to do even as an adult.

That style pictish linked is lovely, but wouldn't look like that with curly hair!

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:39:43

No no - it wouldn't - but I'm saying that short curly hair can look feminine if it's cut right.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:41:15


InNeedOfBrandy Sat 24-Nov-12 09:41:40

The picture pictish put up is how my mum used to have my hair, I always hated it tbh looking back on pics I see it looked nice, but Ive never once cut dds hair and I longed for long hair like the girls in school.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:42:49

Or [,r:76,s:200,i:232 double awwww]]

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:43:22

Try that again.

double awwww

SminkoPinko Sat 24-Nov-12 09:55:44

Cute hairstyles but what on earth is the text on your link trying to say pictish?! It's total gobbledigook!

My daughter has terrible cradle cap and curly tangly hair. Hates hair brushing. I gather it into a pony tail and cut it close to the nape of the neck into a short messy bob.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:56:54

No idea!

breatheslowly Sat 24-Nov-12 09:58:40

You could try the curly girl methods with her. It suggests not brushing curly hair.

curly girl

LadyMargolotta Sat 24-Nov-12 10:43:09

Mt dd2 has thick, curly hair. The best cut for her was a very short elfin cut. DD1 with very straight hair suits the french bob very well, but I don't think that would work for curly hair.

KRITIQ Sat 24-Nov-12 10:46:38

What SGM said.

Sime of the discussion makes me feel incredibly sad. As a child in the 60's and 70's, I mostly had short hair because I hated the detangling and at the time, I dont'think there was today's preoccupation with ensuring children conform to the appearance of one gender.

If another child or adult thought I was a boy, I just told them I was a girl. It didn't bother me any more than if they'd got my age or name wrong.

Something makes me feel uneasy that it seems necessary put in extra grooming time and cause pain with detangling that the child doesn't want, just to ensure she's considered socially acceptable. Does that not rather give a message about female appearance being the most important thing about being female?

Bue Sat 24-Nov-12 11:14:55

Growing up in the 80s almost ALL the little girls had short hair. It is adorable, not to mention far, far easier to manage. It really is thoroughly depressing that society has become so rigid about these things that even little people's hairstyles have strict gender rules. I didn't even realize until this thread that is now apparently an issue sad

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 11:27:13

That was precisely the motivation I had to give dd the chop.
She had lovely wavy silky long hair. She looked beautiful with her boho bun, her bunches, her plait...but she didn't care for it. She cried. Every morning. A lot.

I felt awful about it because she's pretty placid and amenable in the main, and I came to realise that the long hair was more for my benefit than hers. She's 3 and doesn't care about her hair. Neither she should.

The cropped bob she has now is fabulous. It makes her stand out a bit, she looks very funky, and all I have to do is run a brush through it. She still hates it but it takes 10 seconds. She gets compliments all the time.

If, when she is older, she wants long hair, then she has to understand and accept it must be brushed and styled. If she can agree to that, then fine. Otherwise it stays short.

I have short hair myself. I cut all my bum length hippy tresses when I was 24 and have never looked back. I far prefer short hair. Long hair is a faff too far for me. I hope dd wants to keep hers short.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 12:17:25

I have had short hair for 24 years now, after being made to grow it as a child.
In my experience, the people who will "mistake" a little girl with short hair for a boy are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles, and deserve to be talked down to by the child in question.

I never used to quite understand why mothers in particular got so attached to and invested in their daughters' hair - my own DD has had shortish hair for most of her life, partly because it is quite fine and lank. However, you only have to look at other threads on here about haircuts to see that female hair, wherever it is growing, is really seen as public property for some reason.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:34:05


No extra grooming time is necessary if you learn how to care for particular hair types, its no big deal.

I think it is far more damaging to a childs self image to have their 'unruly' curls chopped off, just to make it easier for their parent to manage.

Curly hair is not that difficult to manage. Curly hair is not bad hair.

All three of my boys have had at some point long hair, their hair is very curly, yet we still manage fine. It's no big deal and they are now old enough to care for it themselves anyway.

This goes both ways, you shouldn't use your daughters hair to make a political point, anymore than one should use it to conform to societal gender requirements IMO.

I don't think it was any coincedence that my hair being cut off coincided with the start of my Mums journey into radical feminism!

Anyway, Im quite possibly projecting.

If a child wants short or longer hair, their wishes should be respected.

There are two issues here, if its about conforming, then Id say to any Mothers, do what you like to yourself, but listen to what your daughter wants, don't push your ideals onto her.

If its about managability [sp?] then learn how to deal with the hair type, there is no excuse, the internet has masses of info on how to easily care for curly hair types. Don't chop it all of just because you see it as the 'wrong' sort of hair.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:37:35

In my experience, the people who will "mistake" a little girl with short hair for a boy are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles

In my experience, people that cut off little girls hair, are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles.

HullyEastergully Sat 24-Nov-12 12:39:32

I'd cut it.

When I was young we all had short hair (and no conditioner), now the fashion is for long, but that's all it is, fashion. And so impractical.

And so what if people think she's a boy...who cares?

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Nov-12 12:41:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:44:49

Thats bollocks.

I used the word managed, because some seem to find it a huge issue.

Curly hair is not hard work. Unless you make it hard work.

Its faff all to do with the patriachy, its about being bothered or not to put a brush though a childs hair in the morning.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sat 24-Nov-12 12:45:11

Amber this child has asked for it to be cut.

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